Report from World Masters in Autrans, France
By Rick Reynolds
Autrans, France sits in a typical European valley. On the first day of course inspection the snow had a clean appearance to it, however, one of the first things I noticed was the density of wood smoke in the air (again typical for a European valley). While snow may appear clean this doesn't mean it is. When making your wax choice the cleanliness of the snow and the air quality need to be a major consideration. The dirtier the snow the harder the wax needs to be. Due to the air quality I considered this snow to be Dirty!
At the worlds, the 10k skating race always follows the classic race and is held in the afternoon. At this venue that meant regrooming the course between races. The temps were in the 40's, we had had some rain, and now the snow was really dirty. The afternoon race was going to be held on dirty, loose corn!
Because of how dirty the snow was the wax I choose was: LF Moly, HF Red, JetStream Red roto corked, and after testing skis I lightly rubbed on JetStream Red and then used a thermo pad. I used my softest pair of Rossignols with a broken linear grind. Out of over 100 racers in the M5 group I had the Fastest pair of skis on the course! The next day, during lunch, the Swiss silver medalist even commented on them! This was on of those days, I picked the right pair of skis, had the right grind and the wax was on the money!